Has It Really Been Fifty Years?

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 24, 2015 by Oilpressure

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As we head to the track this morning to witness the 99th Running of the Indianapolis 500, i have to ask myself “Has it really been fifty years since I went to my first Indianapolis 500?”. OK, it’ll really be fifty years next week since the 1965 race took place as that race was run on Monday May 31st. But do the math. My first race was the 49th edition and this is the 99th.

At the track this weekend is the winning car from my first race, the Lotus powered by Ford driven by the great Jim Clark. It has become one of the most iconic cars in “500” history. It was the first rear-engine car to ever win. Once it won, no front-engine car won again. Not only was it historic, it was downright beautiful. When I saw it yesterday, I felt like I was reuniting with an old friend. A car I first saw fifty years ago, when I was a six year-old.

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Clark and his Lotus were not the only stars of the 1965 race. The rookie class consisted of Mario Andretti, Al Unser, Gordon Johncock, Joe Leonard, Micky Rupp, Bobby Johns, George Snider, Arnie Knepper, Billy Foster, Masten Gregory and Jerry Grant. There were seven future “500” wins in that group and practcially every one was an exceptional driver. AJ Foyt sat on pole that day and Parnelli Jones finished second.

So the memories are overflowing this morning. The Lotus will run this morning. Al Unser was honored yesterday at Legends Day. Mario Andretti was present, as well. AJ Foyt and Parnelli Jones will be in attendance today.

And so will I. We are all fifty years older than we were on that bright sunny day in 1965. There has been lots of water run under the bridge since. But one thing has not changed. The Indianapolis 500 will run today and that is something very special to all of us.

I’ll post before and after the race today, so please check back often today. You may also follow us on Twitter at @Oilpressureblog and @MrsOilpressure. Please, check back later.

George Phillips

My Personal Two-Seater Ride

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 23, 2015 by Oilpressure

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By Susan Phillips

I must admit, at this point in the Month of May, I am pretty fried. The month of May is also one of the busiest months for my day job. It is graduation and “the new June” for weddings. I spent the weekdays writing “Congratulations” and “Class of 2015” on countless cakes in my territory, which includes 104 stores for a major retail chain. I went out to work in my stores, and then packed up to head 300 miles to Indianapolis every weekend of the month. Yesterday I was unsure if I could even walk around the track, much less carry on coherent conversation. George was in his element, and as the month wore on, I was happy to let him take the driver’s seat and just go along for the ride. It has been a great ride.

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Welcome To Legend’s Day At IMS

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 23, 2015 by Oilpressure

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Good morning from a slightly cool, but beautifully sunny Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I’m not sure that the weather could be more perfect. It’s slightly brisk at the moment but headed to a high of 78 today. The forecast for tomorrow is partly sunny at a high of 80. There is now no mention of rain in Sunday’s forecast.

We went to the Carb Night Burger Bash last night. It was the biggest crowd I’ve seen there since I’ve been going. It was good to see a lot of people we hadn’t seen since last year. It was also good to meet a lot of people that have commented here or that I’ve corresponded with through Twitter. I’d like to give a special shout-out to Bob Butler and his wife Andrea from Florida. They made a point to come up and say Hi to Susan and me, and we had a very nice visit with them.

Today is more of my kind of day at The Speedway. It’s Legend’s Day, this year honoring the career of four-time winner Al Unser. As promised, we started the day at Charlie Brown’s in Speedway for breakfast with my brother, his son and his son-in-law. We got there early enough that we didn’t have to wait. When we left, the line was backed up out into the parking lot.

The vintage cars are about to run, so we are going back out to watch them. After that, it’ll be a leisurely day at the track. That also includes the annual trip to the museum.

Anyway, I hear cars running now so that’s my cue. Susan will have a post up here later today. In the meantime follow her on Twitter at @MrsOilpressure and me at @Oilpressureblog. Check back later.

George Phillips

Welcome To Carb Day At IMS

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 22, 2015 by Oilpressure

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Welcome to the zoo that is Carb Day at IMS. I will spare you the obligatory pictures of the freak show that we encountered. There were just too many to choose from. We were late leaving Nashville, therefore we were delayed arriving here (surely there’s a lesson there somewhere). By arriving at the track by 2:00, the whack jobs were well on their way to inebriation. I almost felt like a misfit walking through the crowd sober.

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Indianapolis 500 Preview

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 22, 2015 by Oilpressure

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Well, the wait is almost over. After a full Month of May, we are now on the cusp of the 99th Running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday.

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Don’t Avoid The Obvious

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 21, 2015 by Oilpressure

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Normally, I don’t seek out controversy. I try to look at things in a positive light, while being realistic. This post focuses more on being realistic. I know many will disagree with me here, and that’s fine. Just know that I’m not purposely trying to stir things up.

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Your 2015 Indianapolis 500 Trivia Answers

Posted in Indianapolis 500 on May 20, 2015 by Oilpressure

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Before getting to lighthearted matters, I would like to wish James Hinchcliffe a full and fast recovery. When John and I recorded our One Take Only on Monday night, we did not know the gravity of the situation at that time. We were under the assumption that it was no more than a fractured femur, which is serious enough.

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